Down the years, Lisicki's serve has brought her plenty of wins and plenty of accolades. Against Ana Ivanovic in Stanford, it brought her a record, too, as she hit the fastest serve of all time. However, it was not enough to prevent her slipping to defeat in her opening match of the summer hardcourt season.
The Turning Point
While the Lisicki serve was not firing on all cylinders against Errani, the rest of her game was as she wrapped up a 6-1, 7-5 win in just an hour and 20 minutes. The German was oozing confidence from the opening game, marrying some deft touches with her usual power to rattle through the opening set.
As she has on so many occasions in the past, Errani responded well in the face of adversity, capitalizing on a loose service game from Lisicki to open up a 3-0 advantage in the second. This lead was soon 5-3, but the Italian was unable to close it out. Or rather Lisicki would not let her, turning on the style to take the next four games and with it the match.
"I'm definitely pleased with my win," Lisicki said. "Sara's a very tough competitor, so it's always tough to play someone like that in the first round.
"I've been working so hard and I played well in the first set last week in Stanford and ended up losing in two. It's always challenging, but I want to get ready for the US Open and it would mean a lot to go far here."
There she will face either Madison Keys or recently crowned Washington champion Svetlana Kuznetsova, who play on Tuesday. Lisicki has never lost to either player, defeating Kuznetsova at Wimbledon in 2009 and the Australian Open three years later, and getting the better of Keys in their sole meeting last February in Memphis.